Respond wisely. Rather than reacting, bring awareness to the present moment and observe what arises within. Relay it back to the other person in a neutral way. For example, if your friend shares challenges during their day, you may observe similar experiences and share the lessons you learned from it. Bridging words and experiences with another is key for strengthening relationships.
Listen well. Deep listening is a gift to others. To be able to listen fully is to let go of self and be fully present for the other person, even when they are sharing their feelings. When your intent is to resonate truly with your friend, the two of you can bond stronger in significant ways. A sense of unity and connection arises for both as feelings of separation disappear. It is only when we feel heard, seen and cared for that we have the courage and curiosity to move beyond feeling stuck in life!
Mutual giving from the heart is the foundation of true dialogue. Communicating with an open mind and heart is sure to enhance personal experiences in life. Notice when judgement and feelings of separation arise within. It is important to ground and center yourself with a quiet mind and relaxed, receptive body. Heart resonance is essential when it coms to strengthening relationships that are most important to you!
A wonderful way to enhance personal experiences in life is by bringing mindful awareness to your conversation habits. True dialogue is an art that is created by the interactive dynamic of individuals involved. In order to improve relationships and enhance your inner experience with those who are important in your life, notice when limiting habits come to the surface and shift to essential practices covered in this True Dialogue series.
Notice when you divert strong feelings from others and become analytical, rationalizing the situation. Questions and comments such as “When did that happen?” or “Maybe it’s because … ” blocks connection by hindering the other persons flow of sharing. Stay present in the moment with an open heart and continue to listen to get a better understanding of the other person. Attunement is key for developing stronger, healthier relationships.
Expand your awareness embracing the perception that you are not alone when experiencing shame or triggering shame in another. Remember that shame is a feeling that passes through you just as all other emotions do when you are open to acknowledging them and releasing them. Remember always that you are human and that all humans have lessons to learn through relationships. Be humble, honouring yourself and others! Holding the big picture is essential for moving forward in life!
Support networks are precious resources during troubling times. Create your own support network for when shame is triggered. Make a list of friends and allies who are able to commit to being available for you, who hold a tender, kind and compassionate heart and ideally have a healthy sense of humour. Allow your pain to diminish in the moment of your sharing. It is hugely beneficial to ease shame in a timely way and even come to a place of greater wisdom and wit, seeing the foibles of humanity!
Stay positive! Maintain positive energy when others make shaming remarks or comments towards you. For instance, if someone says the meal you made was not as good as last time, you could share your truth and agree if you feel it is so or you could state it seems the same to you. By responding mindfully in the moment with integrity, you will ease old patterns of shame and elevate your confidence and contentment in life!
Imagine yourself being being confident and peaceful in situations that triggered shame in the past. Imagine holding a strong desire for mutual respect, honouring both yourself and the other person. You might say to that person: “Something doesn’t feel right about this conversation. Could you tell me what you mean?” or “I’m bewildered by what you just said. Can you share what your intentions are?” or “I’m feeling hurt right now and need to leave. I’d like to connect later and continue this conversation. Are you okay with that?” Standing up for yourself and initiating change is an empowering technique that helps to release shame.
Shame is an ever depleting emotion that triggers a lot of anxiety. Whenever worry about judgements emerge and you try to counteract it, inner combat arises and can be the prevailing energy within. The third lesson for dissolving shame is to think about what you can do for yourself that will help forward movement in life. Perhaps it is standing up for yourself and expressing your truth honestly. Ask for what you need. Develop your true self in transformative moments like these!
Shame is often derived from early childhood experiences. Many people feel the effects of shame from discrimination, poverty and racism. Rectify past issues by embracing the second important lesson for releasing shame:
Say to yourself, “I am not my shame.” Mindfully work towards freeing yourself from limiting thoughts and beliefs that no longer serve you in life. Believe that you are much more than any emotion that arises within you.